Here we go again in the azislam.com, Islamic information center site. If azislam.com has discussed some articles like etiquette of reading the Holy Quran, impacts of Islamophobia, and importance of Tafsir in Islam, in this occasion, azislam.com will talk about law of kneeling for pleading in Islam.
Kneeling are often done by the majority of people to show an act for pleading. For example, at the wedding day, there is a tradition which called Sungkeman in Indonesia.
Sungkeman is a tradition in Javanese where sungkeman is usually done to complete a special event such as the wedding. The meaning of Sungkeman comes from the word of “sungkem” which means kneeling or squatting while kissing the hand of parents. We can find this tradition in special Javanese events like Eid Feast or wedding day.
Besides that, there is a person who kneels because the prove of his love for his beloved. But, the ways to show love in Islam is not kneeling like this, which is very different with the western culture: when a man proposes a woman to become his wife for the example. The position of that man is usually kneeling in front of the woman who is proposed by him, while extending engagement ring. But in Islamic shariah, the proposition is not posed to the woman, but her real father as the guardian of that woman. Because he is someone who will marry his daughter. If that proposition is accepted, the marriage will happen.
So in Islam, we do not know the phrase, “Will you marry me?”. But request a man to the real father of a woman who is loved by him, such as “If you give me a permission, I want to marry your daughter.”
But commonly, the matter of this proposition is not done directly by a bridegroom, but he should invite his parents. So, the proposition will be delivered by his parents to the parents of bride.
At this time, azislam.com will explores about the law of kneeling for pleading in Islam. Some Ulama argue that they allow to do sungkeman or kneeling to parents with purpose to ask a permission. So, it is not a bad deed.
But, others Ulama forbid this kneeling action because it is considered that slouching or kneeling to anyone other than Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala. This different views are natural because there are some factor that cause disagreement in Islamic fiqh.
The Law of Kneeling For Pleading In Islam, is it allowed or not?
The example of kneeling that is often done is Sungkeman tradition where the bride and groom do that in their wedding party to get a permission from their parents. So, is sungkeman or kneeling allowed or forbidden in Islam? Some Ulama allow it but others forbid it.
Ulama who allow it argue that the action of kneeling is one of examples in this sungkeman is not including in the movement of sujud or ruku. So, there is no intention to worship or heighten other than Allah Subahanahu Wa ta’ala.
Besides that, they allow this sungkeman because the behavior like this is one of polite customs, especially in Indonesian society. As long as, it is not done in the wrong way and there is no dalil that forbid it.
The same with the prohibition of crying died people in Islam, some Ulama argue that kneeling is forbidden. As the hadith below :
We asked to the Prophet, “O Messenger of Allah, may part of us slouch our body to others who we met?”. Rasulullah said, “No, it is not”. We asked again, “May we hug each other if we met?”. The Prophet said, “No. The right way that you should handshake each other.” (Narrated by Ibn Majah, from Anas bin Malik) [AdSense-B]
Besides kneeling, sometimes another way to honor our parents in Indonesia is kissing their hand. It is including to the category of kneeling because it is slouching the body.
This becomes a controversy between Ulama. Some of them allow it and others forbid it. But, in the fatwa of Samahatus Syeikh Abdullah bin Humaid advised that kissing the forehead of parents to show our respect is better than kissing their hand. As it is mentioned in the quote below :
فالإمام مالك يقول: إن تقبيل اليد هو السجدة الصغرى. والإمام الشافعي يمنع ذلك. وأباح بعض أهل العلم أيضًا تقبيل يد الوالدين, أو يد العالم. لكن الأولى ترك ذلك لله, فتقبيل رأس أمك أو رأس أبيك أفضل, ولا بأس. والله أعلم.
Imam Malik said, “Indeed kissing hand is a little sujud.” Imam Syafii also forbids to kiss hand. But some Ulama allow to kiss the hand of parents or Ulama. But it should be better if we leave that thing because of Allah SWT. Kissing the forehead of mother or father (As a respect form) that is better and no problem to be done.” (Fatwa Sahamatus Syeikh Abdullah bin Humaid number 272, page 256)
Syeikh Muhammad Nashiruddin Al Albani said,
“About kissing hand in this case, there are many hadith and narrations from whole salaf showed that the hadith is shahih from the Prophet. Because of that, we agreed that kissing hand of Ulama is allowed if it meets some requirements below.
- That kissing hand is not become as a habbit. So Ulama accustom to give their hand to their students. As students accustom to hope blessings by kissing the hand of their teacher. This is caused the hand of the Prophet Muhammad shallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam is often kissed by his companions. So, it is forbidden to make it as a habit in daily life according to in the explanations of fiqh.
- By that kissing hand, Ulama must not become arrogant and better than others. He should not consider himself the greatest because he is an Ulama.
- That kissing hand does not cause the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad shallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam to lose such as handshake. Handshake is a good deed that encouraged according to the behavior and words of the Prophet. Handshake can fall your sins as there are in some hadith. Because of that, may not lose the sunnah of handshake because pursuing a good deed that the law is only allowed. (Liniage Shahiha 1/159, Maktabah Syamilah)
But, we need to add the fourth of requirements. The hand of Ulama is the hand of Sunni Islam, not Ulama who defense bid’ah practices.
From the explanation above, we can conclude that there is no definite prohibition about the law of kneeling for pleading in Islam because it depends on the intention of each person, but some Ulama mentioned that we should be better to leave it.
We should be better to leave it and do something that has been clear its advantages and get rewards, such as virtues of dhikr to Allah SWT in the month of Ramadan and ways to give charity in Islam in the month of Ramadan. Indeed there is a reply for arrogant people who do not want to learn and do goodness. Na’udzubillahu mindzalik.